Study: ‘Booster shots’ of healthy soil restore barren fields

Restoring grasslands and other ecosystems that have been destroyed by agriculture can take decades. But a team of ecologists from The Netherlands has discovered a way to do it in just six years—by “inoculating” the degraded soil with a thin layer of soil from a healthy field, according to a report in Science on a study published in the journal Nature Plants.

Reversing desertification through livestock grazing

The troubles for the villagers of Sianyanga, Zimbabwe, began in the late 1980s, when the Nalomwe River, which watered the village, went dry. Soon, the shade trees died and the villagers' cattle herds suffered for lack of water and forage, says a Pacific Standard story produced in partnership with FERN.